From year to year, and several times throughout the year, the way search engines work and rank websites will experience changes, some minor and others more significant. When those significant changes start to appear, you need to be prepared.
As 2019 gets underway, we wanted to start off the year by looking at some trends that could be popular this year in the SEO space.
Here are five trends to watch for in the new year.
Structured Data – Structured data helps make web pages rank better similar to how your content does. Structured data is organized data that resides in the coding of your web pages. With the help of websites like Schema.org, you can find templates on how to include this data. Start by copying and pasting from these templates and start to work with it to include your data. All you have to do is replace the content in the templates with your own and you are using structured data, something that only 17 percent of marketers were using as of 2016.
Avoid Mistakes with Structured Data – In using structured data, you can make a fairly simple mistake and pay a big price as a result. There are a few common mistakes to avoid when it comes to structured data. Avoid using inappropriate structured data, data that does not match your on-page content or anything that violates Google’s guidelines for specific data types or Google’s general guidelines on structured data. Avoid taking shortcuts when it comes to structured data. Diligence, accuracy and not misleading people or the search engines will get you much farther and is worth the time.
Podcasts – As a business owner, if you are an expert in your field or have a lot to share about the industry, products or services, host or be a guest on a podcast that you can promote. Podcasts are a newer form of content that works really well for niche industries. People enjoy listening to experts regarding subjects, topics, and products that interest them. With a podcast, not only do you get exposure, but it can lead to sponsorships or just be a great place for some self-promotion.
Focused Content – Often times, content is written with keywords in mind to boost a connection with search engines and generate rankings. That works to an effect, but the bigger impact is made when you write content that has a purpose, that answers a question and can draw responses. Keywords don’t create backlinks, quality content does, because people are more likely to link to something that provided an answer than anything else. Keeping your content focused and not misleading to readers makes a difference.
Image SEO – Images are an important part of SEO. Treat them that way. When adding images, make sure they are relevant to what you are saying in the rest of the content. Optimize images so they load faster and more effectively. If you are marketing a product or trying to show off one of your products for purchase, let images paint the picture. Don’t show images from a category, show the specific product and all of the details about it in a series of images. Images are just another part of communicating with readers and customers, so use that to your advantage.
A new year is a new beginning, and with these trends in mind, you can start to work toward your goals of achieving better SEO results in 2019. Keeping up on trends throughout the year is just as important as taking action on the trends that are in today.